Congratulations! You’ve said “yes” to forever, and now the exciting journey of wedding planning begins. Getting engaged is a magical moment filled with love and anticipation for the future. While it is one of the most thrilling times of your life, it can also be one of the most stressful. If you’ve never planned a wedding before, the amount of work required can be overwhelming. You may be wondering what your first steps should be. Before you spiral into a tizzy trying to sort out every single wedding detail, there are five important steps. Breaking them down in this order will not only make wedding planning a lot less stressful, but it will also set you up for success!
What To Do After Getting Engaged
Celebrate the Moment
The first and most important thing to do after getting engaged is to savor the moment. Take time to celebrate this significant milestone with your partner and loved ones. Whether it’s through a series of phone or FaceTime calls or an intimate gathering where you deliver the amazing news, allow yourself to soak up the joy and excitement of your engagement before diving into the details of wedding planning. Before you start reaching out to vendors and putting together a budget, consider planning an engagement party to gather your closest friends and family to share the happiness. Your engagement is going to fly by, so soaking it up as much as possible is vital. It will be over before you know it.
Announce Your Engagement
Once you’ve soaked in the initial bliss and shared the news with those closest to you, it’s time to share it with the world. Announcing your engagement is a special and personal touch to the wedding planning process. Craft a heartfelt engagement announcement that reflects your personality as a couple. Whether you choose to send out formal printed cards or create a social media post, make it uniquely yours. Consider including a romantic photo (whether it be one you took before the engagement or the proposal itself) and a brief story of your proposal.
Set a Tentative Wedding Date
While jumping straight into the nitty-gritty details of wedding planning might be tempting, take a step back and discuss a tentative wedding date with your partner. Having a general time frame in mind helps set the tone for the planning process and allows you to communicate effectively with vendors, venues, and guests. Consider factors such as the season you prefer, any dates that hold sentimental value, and the availability of key people, like close family and friends. Remember that flexibility is crucial during this stage, as venue availability and other factors may influence your final decision. Once you’ve settled on a tentative date, you can start looking into venues and vendors with a clearer vision in mind.
There are a few instances where this is not the third step. For example, if there is a venue you have always dreamed of getting married at or a photographer whose work you’ve been eyeing for months, you may want to contact them first to see their availability before setting a date. Of course, this entirely depends on how important these aspects of the wedding are to you and your partner.
Discuss Budget and Priorities
Speaking of setting priorities, wedding planning comes with a range of expenses, and it’s essential to have an open and honest discussion about your budget and priorities early on. Sit down with your partner and determine how much you’re willing to spend on the various elements of your wedding–from the venue and catering to the attire and decorations. This budget will drastically guide your decision-making and ensure you’re on the same page regarding financial matters. It’s also a great time to find out whether or not family members will be contributing at all.
Once a number is decided on, discuss your priorities as a couple. Are you more focused on a grand celebration with hundreds of your loved ones, an intimate gathering, or perhaps allocating most of your money toward an unforgettable honeymoon? Do you want to spend most of your money on your venue, photographer, florals, or DJ? We recommend ranking the top three to five most important aspects so you better understand areas you can splurge on and areas where you can save.
Create a Preliminary Guest List
As you plan your wedding, one of the first tasks is creating a preliminary guest list. While it may seem straightforward, it often requires thoughtful consideration and collaboration between you and your partner. Start by identifying the essential people in your lives—family, close friends, and other important figures. If you already have a venue in mind, think about what their capacity is. If you have yet to choose a venue, this guest list will determine where you tie the knot, so take the time and think carefully.
This guest list won’t just determine your venue. It also affects other costs such as catering, tablescapes, rentals, etc. While this number is most likely going to change a bit as you get further into the wedding planning journey, the earlier you have a rough estimate, the better.
The period immediately following your engagement is a time for celebration, communication, and thoughtful planning. By taking these relatively simple five must-dos to heart, you set the stage for a memorable wedding.
Before you go, we have one last tip. Setting up your wedding gallery for your entire wedding season early on with an album for each event or outing is one of the best ways to keep all your precious memories in one place. Your engagement party, dress shopping, bridal shower, and rehearsal dinner are special moments you’ll never want to forget. And WaldoWed can help.
Not only does a WaldoWed gallery make it simple to collect everyone’s photos and videos from your smaller gatherings leading up to your wedding day, but you can also add a Memories Slideshow for your rehearsal dinner comprised of old photos of your journey, a Live Slideshow at your reception, and a Video Guestbook for gathering well wishes from your friends and family. WaldoWed also provides pre-designed QR code signage for table tops, picture frames, and easels, allowing guests to scan and immediately add their photos and videos without downloading an app. Basically, it can help in every step of your wedding planning journey! So, here’s to having the time of your life, and congratulations on taking this next step!